Eastchester Youth Soccer has adopted, effective with the spring season, the new US Soccer Federation Guidelines with respect to heading and injuries to the head. This applies across EYSA, for both the recreation and travel programs.
Heading will be prohibited in all divisions U11 and younger. This includes all teams through and including our Silver Conference of the Upper Division of rec. When a player playing in one of these divisions heads the ball, the referee will stop play and award an indirect free kick to the opposing team from the spot where the heading took place. If the deliberate header by the defending team occurs inside the goal area, the indirect free kick should be taken on the goal area line parallel to the goal line at the point nearest to where the heading infringement occurred. Heading should similarly be prohibited in practice. In fact, heading should be limited in practice for u-12 and u-13 players (Gold Conference of our rec league).
GAME MANAGEMENT WITH RESPECT TO HEAD INJURIES Referees are required to immediately stop the game and remove the player for the balance of the game if they observe or otherwise become aware of a bump, blow or jolt to a player’s head or they become aware that a player is complaining about or is showing signs or reporting symptoms consistent with having suffered a concussion. Certified referees have already been trained to recognize the signs of head trauma. Although referees have been trained, we recognize that many are young teenagers. Coaches should never overrule the referee’s judgment. For travel games, the referee should note, in his or her online report, any player so removed because of a suspected of a possible head injury, and retain that player’s pass and send it to the League office.